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D. Joshua Cameron, PhD Neuroscience, FAAO

Associate Professor

College of Optometry

E-Mail: jcameron@westernu.edu

Phone: 909-469-8203 | Fax: 909-706-3905

Website: www.westernu.edu

Join year: 2010


Postdoctoral Fellowship in Neurobiology, 2007-2010, Harvard University

Ph.D. in Neuroscience, 2007, University of Utah

B.S. in Molecular Biology, 2004, Brigham Young University


Fellow, 2011, American Academy of Optometry

Professional Experience

Editor in Chief, Ophthalmology and Eye Diseases, LAPress, 2008-present

Teaching Experience

Western University of Health Sciences, College of Optometry, Pomona, CA

Physician and Society (OPTM 5002):Instructor

Vision Science II: Monocular Sensory Aspects of Vision (OPTM 6041): Instructor/Course Director

Vision Science III: Development of Vision (OPTM 6042): Instructor/Course Director

Research elective (OPTM 8162): Instructor/Course Director

Harvard University, Cambridge, MA

Vision: How it Functions and Why it Fails(Neurobiology 95hfn): Instructor

Responsible Conduct for Research: Instructor

Neurobiology of Behavior (MCB80): Teaching Fellow

Neuroscience/ Embryology and Development (HHMI Outreach Program): Teaching Fellow

Northeastern University, Boston, MA

Critical Thinking for Research (BIO4305): Sr. Lecturer

Eagle Gate College, Salt Lake City, UT

Medical Fundamentals (History and Ethics): Instructor


OPTM 5002 Physician and Society, College of Optometry

OPTM 6041 Vision Science 2: Monocular Sensory of Vision, College of Optometry

OPTM 6042 Vision Science 3: Develepment of Vision, College of Optometry

OPTN 8162 Research Elective, College of Optometry

Research Interest

Blindness, in many forms, affects millions of people around the world. The causes are varied and oftentimes poorly understood. The zebrafish has emerged as a model organism for many diseases and basic biological processes. Zebrafish can be used in a variety of molecular, genetic, and behavioral techniques, making them aptly suited for complex experimentation.

I am taking a two pronged approach to gain insight into several of these diseases using zebrafish as a model. First, I am exploring the developing eye, with a significant focus on the retina and the regulatory role of vitamin A. Second, I am working to develop several eye disease models that can be used to examine pathophysiology and treatments.

Because many causes of blindness are linked to other disease systems in the body, I am also collaborating with fellow scientists to study their associated causes and effects - again using zebrafish as our model.

Research Grant

Molecular Bases of Eye Diseases T32, 2008 - 2009, NEI


2007 National Eye Institute Travel Grant, ARVO

2007 Graduate Student Research Travel Award, University of Utah

2006 Young Investigators Award, XIIth International Symposium on Retinal Degeneration

2006 Graduate Student Research Travel Award, University of Utah

2005-2006University TA Scholar, University of Utah


American Academy of Optometry (AAO)

Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO)


University Faculty Senate

University Research Committee

College of Optometry Curriculum Committee

Promotion and Tenure Committee


Select Original Articles

  • D.W. Ethell and D.J. Cameron, Imaging and 3D Reconstruction of Cerebrovascular Structures in Embryonic Zebrafish, J. Vis Exp, accepted.
  • H.T. Lee, J.E. Dowling, D.J. Cameron, Early Retinoic acid deprivation in zebrafish results in microphthalmia, Visual Neuroscience. 2012; Sep; 29(4-5):219-28. PMID: 23013828
  • D.J. Cameron,C. Galvin, T. Alkam, H. Sidhu, J Ellison, D.W. Ethell, Alzheimer’s Related Peptide Amyloid-β Serves a Conserved Role in Angiogenesis, PlosONE 2012;7(7):e39598. Epub 2012 Jul 9. PMID: 22792182
  • Z. Yang, Y. Chen, C. Lillo, J. Chien, Z. Yu, M. Michaelides, M. Klein, K.A. Howes, Y. Li, Y. Kaminoh, H. Chen, C. Zhao, Y. Chen, Y.T. Al-Sheikh, G. Karan, D. Corbeil, P. Escher, S. Kamaya, C. Li, S. Johnson, J.M. Frederick, Y. Zhao, C. Wang, D.J. Cameron, W.B. Huttner, D.F. Schorderet, F.L. Munier, A.T. Moore, D.G.Birch, W. Baehr, D.M. Hunt, D.S. Williams, K. Zhang, Mutant prominin 1 found in patients with macular degeneration disrupts photoreceptor disk morphogenesis in mice. J. Clin. Invest. 2008; 118(8): 2908-16.
  • Z. Tong, Z Yang, S. Patel, H. Chen, D. Gibbs, X. Yang, V.S. Hau, J. Harmon, E. Pearson, J. Buehler, Y. Chen, B. Yu, N.H. Tinkham, N.A. Zabriskie, J. Zeng, L. Luo, J.K. Sun, M. Prakash, R.N. Hamam, S. Tonna, R. Constantine, C.C. Ronquillo, S. Sadda, R.L. Avery, J.M. Brand, N. London, A.L. Anduze, G.L. King, P.S. Bernstein, S. Watkins, Genetics of Diabetes and Diabetic Complication Study Group*, L.B. Jorde, D.Y. Li, L.P. Aiello, M.R. Pollak, K. Zhang, Promoter polymorphism of the erythropoietin gene in severe diabetic eye and kidney complications, Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 2008; 105(19): 6998-7003 Epub 2008 May 5. *X. Max, D.J. Cameron, M. Rabena, A. Goldfarb-Rumyantzev, N. Banerjee, H. Keenan, N. Mamalis, C. Perez, B.J. Katz.
  • J. Tuo, C.M. Bojanowski, M. Zhou, D. Shen, R.J. Ross, K.I. Rosenberg, D.J. Cameron, C. Yin, J.A. Kowalak, Z. Zhuang, K. Zhang, C. Chan. Murine Ccl2/Cx3cr1 deficiency results in retinal lesions mimicking human age-related macular degeneration, Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2007; 48(8):3827-36.
  • D.J. Cameron*, Z. Yang*, D. Gibbs*, H. Chen*, Y. Kaminoh, A. Jorgensen, J. Zeng, L. Luo, E. Brinton, G. Brinton, J.M. Brand, P.S. Bernstein, N.A. Zabriskie, S. Tang, R. Constantine, Z. Tong, K. Zhang. HTRA1 variant confers similar risks to geographic atrophy and neovascular age-related macular degeneration, Cell Cycle 2007; 6(9):1122-25 Epub 2007. *co-first author
  • D.J. Cameron*, Z. Tong*, Z. Yang, J. Kaminoh, S. Kamayah, H. Chen, J. Zeng, Y. Chen, L. Luo, K. Zhang. Essential role of Elovl4 in very long chain fatty acid synthesis, skin permeability barrier function, and neonatal survival, Int J Biol Sci 2007; 3:111-119 Epub 2007 Feb 6. *co-first author
  • W. Li*, Y. Chen*, D.J. Cameron*, C. Wang, G. Karan, Z. Yang, Y. Zhao, E. Pearson, H. Chen, C. Deng, K. Howes, K. Zhang. Elovl4 haploinsufficiency does not induce early onset retinal degeneration in mice, Vis Res 2007;47(5):714-22 Epub 2007 Jan 23. *co-first author
  • Z. Yang*, N.J. Camp*, H. Sun, Z. Tong, D. Gibbs, D.J. Cameron, H. Chen, Y. Zhao, E. Pearson, X. Li, A. DeWan, J. Harmon, P.S. Bernstein, V. Shridhar, N.A. Zabriskie, J. Hoh, K. Howes, K. Zhang. Htra1 variant increases susceptibility to age-related macular degeneration, Science 2006;314(5801):992-3. Epub 2006 Oct 19. *co-first author
  • G. Karan*, C. Lillo*, Z. Yang*, D.J. Cameron*, K.G. Locke, Y. Zhao, S. Thirumalaichary, C. Li, D.G. Birch, H.R. Vollmer-Snarr, D.S. Williams, and K. Zhang. Lipofuscin accumulation, abnormal electrophysiology, and photoreceptor degeneration in mutant ELOVL4 transgenic mice: a model for macular degeneration. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 2005; 102(11): 4164-9.*co-first author

Reviews, Chapters, and Editorials

  • D.J. Cameron, Introductory Editorial, Ophthalmology and Eye Diseases, 2009, 1:1
  • D.J. Cameron, Z. Yang, Z. Tong, Y. Zhao, A. Praggastis, E. Brinton, J. Harmon, Y. Chen, E. Pearson, P.S. Bernstein, G. Brinton, X. Li, A. Jorgensen, S. Schneider, D. Gibbs, H. Chen, C. Wang, K. Howes, N.J. Camp, K. Zhang. 10q26 is Associated with Increased Risk of Age-Related Macular Degeneration in the Utah Population, Hollyfield, J.G., Anderson, R.E., LaVail, M.M., Eds.; 2008; Springer: New York, NY.
  • H.R.Vollmer-Snarr, M.R. Pew, M.L. Alvarez, D.J. Cameron, Z. Chen, G.L. Walker, J.L. Price, J.L. Swallow. Amino-Retinoid Compounds in the Human Retinal Pigment Epithelium, in Retinal Degenerations, Hollyfield, J.G., Anderson, R.E., LaVail, M.M., Eds.; 2006; Springer: New York, NY.

Click HEREfor additional peer-reviewed publications.

Select Recent Abstracts

  • S. Luna, J. Cameron, D. Ethell, Aß1-42 induces angiogenic changes in the cerebrovasculature of zebrafish, Society for Neuroscience, 2012.
  • K.P. Cunvong, D. Ethell, and D.J. Cameron, Amyloid-β Peptide Induces Angiogenesis In The Adult Zebrafish RetinaARVO 2012 Annual Meeting, 2012.
  • P. Tam, F. Rassamdana, K. Dang, D.J. CameronThe Use of Optokinetic Response to Quantitatively Measure Visual Acuity in Adult ZebrafishARVO 2012 Annual Meeting, 2012.
  • F. Rassamdana, P. Tam, K. Dang, D.J. CameronVisual Acuity Deficit Measurement in AdultbugeyeZebrafish Using Optokinetic Response, ARVO 2012 Annual Meeting, 2012.
  • J. Cameron, J. Ellison, K. Goldowski, and D. Ethel, Zebrafish Model of Vascula Changes in Alzheimer’s Disease, Alzheimer’s Association International Conference on Alzheimer’s Disease, 2011.
  • D.J. Cameron and J.E. Dowling, Temporal Elimination of Retinoic Acid Signaling Alters Eye Development in Zebrafish, ARVO 2009 Annual Meeting, 2009
  • D.J. Cameron, Z.Yang, D.Gibbs, H.Chen, A.Jorgensen, L.Luo, G.Brinton, N.A. Zabriskie, Z.Tong, K.Zhang, Genetic Analysis of HTRA1 in Dry Age-Related Macular Degeneration, ARVO 2007 Annual Meeting, 2007.
  • D.J. Cameron, Z. Yang, Z. Tong, Y. Zhao, A. Praggastis, E. Brinton, J. Baird, Y. Chen, E. Pearson, P.S. Bernstein, G. Brinton, C. Wang, K. Howes, N.J. Camp, K. Zhang, LOC387715 Is Associated With Increased Risk Of Neovascular Age-Related Macular Degeneration In The Utah Population, XIIth International Symposium on Retinal Degeneration, 2006